Nov 252016
 
Cook confirms Buttler’s return

England skipper Alastair Cook has confirmed that Jos Buttler would make his return to the Test team over a year since his last outing in the format.

Buttler and allrounder Chris Woakes come into the XI with a decision to be made on who will replace Zafar Ansari closer to the Test.

Speaking ahead of the third Test Cook said: “Stuart [Broad] is definitely out and Chris Woakes is definitely in.”

Cook confirmed that Ansari would miss the Test but would not name his replacement with either Gareth Batty or Steven Finn expected to replace the tweaker.

The skipper was confident in Buttler’s abilities but conceded the circumstances for his return were not ideal with the Lancashire keeper having played just one first class game this season.

Cook said: “Jos is an extremely talented cricketer and we’ve all seen that in the one-day and Twenty20 format.

“He’s right up there with the best short-form players in the world and he’s earned an opportunity to come and play here.

“It’s clearly not ideal because of circumstances and he hasn’t played a lot of red-ball cricket but sometimes when the pressure’s off and you just go out and play you can do something special.”

The skipper informed the gathered press that Jonny Bairstow would retain the gloves despite the perception that Buttler is better behind the stumps.

Cook added: “There was no temptation to give Jos the gloves back. I think Jonny’s been outstanding and has settled in that role and done very well.”

The skipper also declared that the axing of Ben Duckett as not the end of the road for the promising youngster.

Skipper Cook went on: “Ben won’t be the only good player who has been dropped.

“He has an England future, there’s no doubt about it, because he’s a very talented guy with a lot ahead of him.

“When I chatted to him he said he thought he was a pretty decent player of spin. And he is. But he just has an issue which unfortunately has been found out quite quickly which can happen in this part of the world in international cricket.

“He can go and address that and come again because he’s a very talented and exciting cricketer in all three forms. It’s just a blip in his career. He will have to work at his game, but he isn’t the first person who has to do that and he won’t be the last.”

Nov 252016
 
The Ultimate Cricket Betting Guide

by Alastair Symondson  Friday 25 November 2016

The Oval – T20 cricket under floodlights

©Action Images

Cricket has taken great strides to make the game more accessible and entertaining to the sporting public. The cavalier approach of limited overs has trickled down to the Test arena where the action is more exciting than ever before and having a bet on the cricket only adds to the drama and tension.
Gambling is a major pastime in the UK and there are many ways to bet on sport. This cricket betting guide will help you choose the best betting strategy to suit your knowledge of the game and desire to take risks.

Matched betting

This is the only legal method that guarantees you can make a profit betting on cricket and other sports. The system uses betting exchanges and a handy matched bets betting calculator to turn bookmaker free bets and bonuses into cold hard cash. 

Winnings from matched betting are limited by the value of the free bets. You’ll need to spend an hour or so each day to make £400-£500 per month and be prepared to bet on sports other than cricket. It’s ideal for people with limited knowledge of the finer points of cricket and those who are risk averse. It’s a brilliant way to pay for trips with the Barmy Army or to attend big finals.

Sportsbook markets

Placing bets with a bookmaker is the most traditional way to bet on cricket. They offer lots of choice with match winner, Series winner, series scores, tops batsman and top bowler being the most popular markets. They’ll dream up plenty of alternatives for high profile games and these days you can also bet in-play with the odds changing as the overs run down and wickets fall.

Within limits, you can bet as little or as much as you want which allows you to judge the right balance of risk and reward for the level of excitement you want to experience. The odds are generally in the bookmakers’ favour but knowledgeable cricket fans keeping their eye on things like the weather, pitch conditions, the fitness/mood of key players have a better chance of winning than those relying on lady luck.

Spread betting

Cricket spread betting is a thrilling way to complement your viewing of live cricket but it is not for the feint hearted. Spread betting is inspired by city financial trading and is much more than simply predicting the final result. Spread betting firms will offer a prediction on a two way market and you decide whether the outcome will be higher or lower than the prediction (or spread).
Your skill and willingness to take risks is important in spread betting because the stake you place isn’t fixed. If you sell for £5 in a runs market for instance you’ll win your stake multiplied by each run higher than the spread or lose £5 for every run lower than the spread. So, the more your bet is right, the more you will win but on the flip side, the more you get it wrong the more you will lose.
Spread betting is regarded as high risk and you can lose more than your initial stake. In addition to an in-depth knowledge of the game it requires a good understanding of spread betting techniques and strategies.

Betting Exchange Trading

Betting exchanges allow to you to bet with other members of the exchange, you can place a bet as you normally would with a bookmaker or play the role of bookmaker and accept a bet from another member.
Cricket betting is very popular on the Betfair Exchange which has loads of markets to choose from. Exchanges provide a useful alternative to bookmakers where you can sometimes find better prices but come into their own as a platform for trading during a cricket match.
Exchange odds fluctuate with every over. Maiden overs, a batsman getting his eye in, fall of wickets, bowler changes and weather will cause the odds to swing back and forth. The best traders are adept at predicting the way the market moves, backing and laying for small profits that can build up to healthy gains by the end of the match. Like spread betting, trading on cricket requires great knowledge of the game and its statistics in addition to understanding the techniques and associated risks.

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Nov 252016
 
Rain halts Kiwis in Hamilton

New Zealand reached 77-2 on a rain-affected opening day of the second Test against Pakistan in Hamilton.

Play started on time in overcast conditions at Seddon Park but only 21 overs were possible before heavy rain set in 15 minutes before the lunch interval, and three hours later play was abandoned for the day.

With Misbah-ul-Haq having returned home after the death of his father-in-law, stand-in Pakistan captain Azhar Ali won the toss and elected to bowl first on a green surface with light drizzle in the air.

Ali’s decision meant that it was the 20th successive Test match in New Zealand where the side winning the toss had chosen to insert the opposition.

Jeet Raval was dropped on four by Sami Aslam at slip off Mohammad Amir, but he managed to hold onto another edge off Amir soon after as Tom Latham was dismissed for 13.

Amir then dropped Kane Williamson off his own bowling – a tough caught-and-bowled chance when the New Zealand captain was on nought.

But Williamson’s luck was to run out when he was given out caught behind off Sohail Khan for 13 following a successful Pakistan review, though replays and real-time snicko suggested only the faintest of edges.

Ross Taylor (29 not out) and Raval (35 not out) made the most of the wet conditions and punished anything loose to ensure the hosts will resume day two with two batsmen well set and eight wickets still in hand.

The loss of overs on day one means that play will start half an hour earlier on the remaining four days of the Test.

Watch day two of the second Test between New Zealand and Pakistan live on Sky Sports 3 from 9.25pm on Friday.

Nov 252016
 
ECB announces first round of floodlit matches in upcoming season of County Championship

by Manuj Sharma  Friday 25 November 2016

Edgbaston will host the first ever day-night Test for England in 2017

Edgbaston will host the first ever day-night Test for England in 2017

©REUTERS / Action Images

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have announced the fixtures for the 2017 season of the Specsavers County Championship 2017 season which will see the day-night matches in the complete first round.

Essex, Hampshire, Warwickshire and Yorkshire in Divison One while Durham, Glamorgan, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire and Sussex in Division Two will get the opportunity to host the day-night matches which kicks start on 26th June.

The last time a floodlit county game was played way back in 2011 when Kent and Glamorgan locked horns in Canterbury.

With Edgbaston set to host the first ever day-night Test in United Kingdom against West Indies in August 2017, the ECB wants the English players to get a feel of the conditions in the first round of the championship which will be played with pink Duke balls.

Tom Harrison, the ECB’s chief executive officer, believes with increasing popularity to day-night Tests, it is vital for the players to be given as many chances to experience the conditions at the first-class level.

“We were excited to announce a few weeks ago that Edgbaston will be staging an historic day/night Test, and it’s great that the counties, and the Specsavers County Championship, can also get involved,” said Harrison.

“It was important for us to arrange a full round of fixtures to give our England players the chance to experience the conditions. But just as we wanted to assess the impact of making Test cricket more accessible by changing the hours of play, the counties have really embraced the potential of Championship matches that stretch well into the evening when people have finished school or work.

“The early indications from Edgbaston are that day-night Test cricket is proving very popular, and hopefully it will be the same for the Specsavers County Championship now the fixtures are confirmed. There are some really attractive matches in the day/night round, and it will be fascinating to see how it works out.”

The 2017 season will get underway on 7th April with matches to be played on Friday allowing significant amount of matches in weekend.

ECB has also announced the fixtures for the Royal London One-Day Cup which will begin on 27th April and the final will be played on 1st July.

There has been change of schedule in the Natwest T20 Blast as well as it will begin on 7th July and will be played in the next seven weeks rather than a spread of three months as done previously.

© Cricket World 2016

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Nov 252016
 
ICC laments Du Plessis appeal

By PA Sport

Last Updated: 25/11/16 7:27am

Faf du Plessis has appealed after being found guilty of ball-tampering

Faf du Plessis has appealed after being found guilty of ball-tampering

Faf du Plessis has appealed after being found guilty of ball-tampering

The International Cricket Council has expressed its disappointment at Faf du Plessis’ appeal against his ball-tampering sanction.

The South Africa captain was found guilty of applying an artificial substance – saliva produced by sucking a mint – to the ball in the second Test against Australia and fined 100 per cent of his match fee in Hobart.

Du Plessis has maintained his innocence and after feeling aggrieved at the verdict has decided to challenge it, with the ICC now appointing a judicial commissioner to hear the appeal.

England and India’s cricketers react to the ball-tampering charge against South Africa’s captain Faf du Plessis

The governing body said in a statement: “The ICC is disappointed that Faf du Plessis has chosen not to accept the findings of match referee Andy Pycroft and will instead exercise his right to appeal.

“A judicial commissioner will now be appointed to hear the appeal at the earliest opportunity.

South Africa captain Faf du Plessis believes the ICC has opened a ‘can of worms’ in finding him guilty of ball-tampering

“The ICC will wait until the completion of the appeal before making full comment, but at this stage it is important to clarify the laws of cricket. These state that a player should not use artificial substances to shine the ball. The ICC’s understands that to include, but is not limited to, sunscreen, lip ice and residue from sweets.”

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Du Plessis made the most of escaping a ban by scoring an unbeaten century for the Proteas on the first day of the third Test in Adelaide as his side chase a historic series whitewash in Australia.

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Nov 252016
 
Cook confirms Buttler recall

By SSN HQ

Last Updated: 25/11/16 8:30am

Jos Buttler will play his first Test match in 13 months as England drop batsman Ben Duckett for the third Test against India.

England skipper Alastair Cook has confirmed Jos Buttler will play in the third Test against India in place of Ben Duckett.

Cook also confirmed fast bowler Stuart Broad will miss the match in Mohali – which starts on Saturday – with a tendon injury in his foot and will be replaced by Chris Woakes.

India vs England

November 26, 2016, 6:00am

Live on Sky Sports 2 HD

England enter the Test 1-0 down in the five-match series following the 246-run defeat in Visakhapatnam earlier in the week.

Stuart Broad is not fit to play in Mohali

Stuart Broad is not fit to play in Mohali

Stuart Broad is not fit to play in Mohali

Buttler, who has not played Test cricket in 13 months after being dropped against Pakistan in the UAE last year, will bat at No 7, with Moeen Ali moving up the order to take Duckett’s position at No 4 and Jonny Bairstow shifting up to No 5. 

India v England: Stats preview

Richard Isaacs looks at the key stats ahead of the third Test between India and England in Mohali

Speaking of Buttler’s recall, Cook said: “We’re dealing with a very talented guy and he’s earned an opportunity to come and play here. 

Ian Ward, Michael Atherton, Nasser Hussain and Ian Botham preview the third Test between India and England in Mohali

“It’s not ideal circumstances, not having had any practice out here with the red ball or having played a huge amount, but sometimes when the pressure is off you can come out and play and do something special.”

Cook insists Duckett still has a bright future ahead with England despite this setback.

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“He won’t be the only good player that’s been dropped,” he added. “He has an England future, there is no doubt about it. 

Bob Willis tells The Verdict that dropping Ben Duckett for the third Test would be the fairest thing England can do for the player

“He is a very talented guy with a lot ahead of him and it’s amazing chatting to him saying ‘I thought I was a pretty good player of spin’ and he is a good player of spin, he’s just got an issue which has been found out quite quickly, as can happen in these parts of the world and international cricket.

“So he can go away and address that and come again. It’s just a blip in his career.”

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Nov 252016
 
Counties embrace day-night games

Last Updated: 25/11/16 6:34am

County champions Middlesex will play their day-night game against Essex in June

Next season’s County Championship will feature a full round of day-night matches using a pink Duke ball.
The full fixture list for 2…

Nov 252016
 
Rain restricts first day's play in Hamilton to just 21 overs

by Sandeep Shivam  Friday 25 November 2016

Ross Taylor looked fluent before rain interrupted

Ross Taylor looked fluent before rain interrupted

©REUTERS / Action Images

New Zealand 77-2 (Raval 35no) v Pakistan
Second Test, Hamilton, day one
Scorecard

Rain played spoilsport on day one of the second Test in Hamilton with only 21 overs of play possible in which New Zealand managed to score 77 for two.

Pakistan won the toss and elected to field first. A ban for Misbah-ul-Haq for poor over rate allowed Mohammad Rizwan to make his debut while Wahab Riaz and Imran Khan replaced Yasir Shah and Rahat Ali for the visitors.

New Zealand brought in Mitchell Santner for Todd Astle and Matt Henry took the place of injured Trent Boult.

Rain delayed the start of the proceedings by 30 minutes. In the first over of the day, Mohammad Amir (1-15) had Tom Latham (0) caught in the slips.

Kane Williamson (13) was handed a reprieve when Amir dropped him off his own bowling in the fifth over.

Both Williamson and Jeet Raval (35 not out) added 35 runs for the second wicket before the former behind off Sohail Khan (1-35). Pakistan had to use a review to get the decision in their favour.

Ross Taylor (29 not out), who is set to undergo an eye surgery after the game had no problem with his vision whatsoever as he scored six boundaries in his 20-ball knock to take New Zealand to 77 for two in 21 overs when the rain arrived.

The rain was persistent and did not allow any further play.

© Cricket World 2016

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Nov 252016
 
Ed Nuttall steers Canterbury to Plunket Shield win over Auckland

BRENDON EGAN

Last updated 19:12, November 25 2016

Ed Nuttall took a five wicket bag to lead Canterbury to victory.

Chris Symes

Ed Nuttall took a five wicket bag to lead Canterbury to victory.

Left-arm quick Ed Nuttall ripped through the Auckland lower order to lead Canterbury to a thrilling 10-run Plunket Shield victory on Friday.

Set 361 to win from 85 overs at just over four an over, Auckland were well placed in their run chase at Rangiora’s Mainpower Oval.

They looked comfortable with former Canterbury gloveman Brad Cachopa and Mark Chapman at the crease, but lost their last six wickets for 60 runs.

Luke Ronchi smacked 119 not out for Wellington against Otago in their rain-affected draw.

Chris Skelton

Luke Ronchi smacked 119 not out for Wellington against Otago in their rain-affected draw.

Nuttall picked up four of those to finish with 5-67 in the second innings.

READ MORE:
*Chad Bowes scores ton to propel Canterbury into box seat against Auckland in Plunket Shield match
*Jamieson snares rare eight-for
*Late wickets boost Canterbury

Paceman Kyle Jamieson completed a memorable match, dismissing injured Robbie O’Donnell, who batted in the unaccustomed No11 spot, to seal the win.

Jamieson took 3-86 in the second innings to finish with outstanding match figures of 11-160 after taking eight first innings wickets.

Cachopa was left stranded on 75 not out.

Canterbury looked to have turned the match their way when Nuttall produced a ripper to knock over Black Caps’ batsman Colin Munro’s off stump, leaving Auckland 162-4.

Cachopa and Hong Kong international Chapman regained the initiative, adding 128 for the fifth wicket.

Nuttall was the man to produce the key breakthrough forcing Chapman into a mistake, skying one to Jack Boyle to depart for 81.

Cachopa and Tarun Nethula combined for a handy 50-wicket seventh wicket partnership, appearing to have put Auckland back in control.

Once Nethula went, Auckland folded with their final three batsmen all going cheaply.

Opener Michael Guptill-Bunce [67] and first class debutant Sean Solia [48] helped lay a solid platform early in the innings, but it ultimately proved in vain.

In other round five matches, Northern Districts held on for a gritty draw against Central Districts in Napier.

Competition leaders ND were set a whopping 450 to win and managed to stoically bat out 129 overs in their second dig.

Nick Kelly led the resistance, scoring a patient 56 not out from 229 deliveries as ND got through to 295-7.

Last summer’s leading Plunket Shield run-scorer Bharat Popli contributed 60 for the Knights, getting past 50 for the first time in this season’s competition.

CD’s bowling unit had to soldier on without Doug Bracewell, who was called into New Zealand’s second test squad, but wasn’t required in the playing 11 against Pakistan.

Unwanted Black Caps’ wicketkeeper-batsman Luke Ronchi took out his frustration on the Otago bowlers after missing out on the Chappell-Hadlee one-day squad to face Australia, starting next Sunday.

Wellington’s Ronchi blasted 119 not out from 109 balls, including 13 fours and three sixes, on the final day of a weather-affected match at Dunedin’s University Oval.

The Firebirds declared at 350-7 in reply to Otago first innings total of 208, gaining maximum batting points.

The Plunket Shield takes a break for domestic Twenty20 and one-day action, resuming again in late February.

AT A GLANCE: 

At Rangiora: Canterbury 245 all out and 400-7 decl (Chad Bowes 155, Jack Boyle 81, Peter Fulton 72; Tarun Nethula 5-128) beat Auckland 285 all out and 350 all out (Mark Chapman 81, Brad Cachopa 75no, Michael Guptill-Bunce 67, Sean Solia 48; Ed Nuttall 5-67, Kyle Jamieson 3-86) by 10 runs.

At Napier: Central Districts 225 all out and 377-5 decl (Tom Bruce 115, Dane Cleaver 108no, Ben Smith 70, Greg Hay 45) drew with Northern Districts 153 all out and 295-7 (Bharat Popli 60, Nick Kelly 56no, Scott Kuggeleijn 37, Henry Cooper 34)

At Dunedin: Otago 208 all out (Michael Bracewell 43, Brad Wilson 33, Hamish Rutherford 31; Jeetan Patel 6-55) drew with Wellington 350-7 decl (Luke Ronchi 119no, Matt McEwan 56, Michael Papps 47, Stephen Murdoch 43) 

 – Stuff

Nov 252016
 
India v England: Stats preview

Last Updated: 25/11/16 7:29am

They have been east and then travelled west but now it is time to head north for the third Test of the series and much is riding upon this contest in Mohali, which you can see live on Sky Sports 2 from 3.30am on Saturday.

So, let’s have a look at some of the key attributes ahead of this vital game, with England trailing 1-0 with three games still to play.

India vs England

November 26, 2016, 3:30am

Live on Sky Sports 2 HD

All is not lost

Kevin Pietersen helped England to victory in India in 2012

Kevin Pietersen helped England to victory in India in 2012

Kevin Pietersen helped England to victory in India in 2012

For those who are doom-mongering about England’s chances of salvaging the series, you will only have to rewind your memory four years to find some presence of hope.

Alastair Cook’s side were soundly beaten in Ahmedabad in November 2012 in the first Test of the series but hit back with successive victories in Mumbai and Kolkata. They then closed out the series with outstanding second innings centuries from Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell in Nagpur to bring home the 2-1 series success.

Or how about 2006? A three-match series with England 1-0 down with one to play in Mumbai. Step forward Shaun Udal to decimate India for just 100 and record a 212-run triumph to take a share of the spoils.

And you can ask David Gower as well, whose 1984/85 tourists were 1-0 down with four to play but recorded victories in Delhi and Chennai and flew home with a 2-1 series win in their pockets.

Mohali

The Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium in Mohali, a city around six miles from the city of Chandigarh – known as “The City Beautiful” – has hosted international cricket since 1993 and is proving something of a fortress for the Indian team.

India have an impressive record in Mohali

India have an impressive record in Mohali

India have an impressive record in Mohali

Since December 2009, India have played 10 international games – three Tests, five ODIs and two T20 Internationals – and lost just one, an ODI against Australia in October 2013.

Attention will, for obvious reasons, turn to spin. In the last six Tests played since 2006, in which India are undefeated, winning five and taking a draw against England in 2008, the seam-spin split is roughly 50 per cent.

As for England’s record on this ground, they have headed in five times and endured four defeats, in two Tests and two ODIs, and the 2008 draw on the Mumbai terror-attack shortened tour.

Parthiv Patel is back

He was just a fresh faced 17-year-old when he made his Test debut against England at Trent Bridge in 2002 and he remains the youngest wicket-keeper ever to play the longest format.

Parthiv Patel will play in the third Test against England

Parthiv Patel will play in the third Test against England

Parthiv Patel will play in the third Test against England

But Patel hasn’t seen Test honours since replacing an out of form Dinesh Karthik for the third Test against Sri Lanka at the P Sara Stadium in Colombo in August 2008 with MS Dhoni and Wriddhiman Saha monopolising the Test gloves ever since.

His return comes a full eight years and three months since his last Test appearance, the longest non-enforced break for any Indian Test player in their history (Lala Amarnath, Dattaram Hindlekar, Mushtaq Ali, CS Nayudu and Vijay Merchant all played pre and post-World War II).

And the diminutive 31-year-old keeper returns to the side in good form, having hit his 24th first-class century a week ago, an unbeaten 139 against Madhya Pradesh in the Ranji Trophy.

Jos Buttler is likely to return

Lancashire’s Buttler is fancied to return to the side in place of the struggling Ben Duckett.

Jos Buttler could play in his first Test since October 2015

Jos Buttler could play in his first Test since October 2015

Jos Buttler could play in his first Test since October 2015

However, since his last Test appearance against Pakistan in Dubai back in October 2015, he has played almost exclusively white-ball cricket, apart from the Championship match at the end of the 2016 season for Lancashire against Middlesex at Old Trafford.

Buttler has played 58 white-ball games – 25 one-day games and 33 Twenty20s – since being replaced by Jonny Bairstow behind the stumps during the Pakistan series in the UAE after enduring a tough spell following an impressive start to his Test career.

Jos Buttler’s Test career split

Tests Runs Highest score Average 50s Catches
First 8 Tests 474 85 52.66 5 32
Last 7 Tests 156 42 13.00 0 17

With just one first-class appearance in 14 months, no first-class half-century since his 73 against New Zealand at Headingley in May 2015 and no century since June 2014’s 100 not out against Durham for Lancashire, Buttler is not in a great position for a red-ball Indian examination.

We shall see how he and Cook’s men fair on Saturday morning when play gets underway.

Watch Rashid and England in action in the third Test against India in Mohali, live on Sky Sports 2 from 3.30am on Saturday.

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